Sen. Kamala Harris Spurns Corporate PAC Donations, Joining Other 2020 Hopefuls

(The Washington Post) -

Sen. Kamala D. Harris, D-Calif., said Monday that she will no longer accept donations from corporate political action committees, a shift in her public position from just a few weeks ago.

With Harris’s new stance, announced during a radio interview, she joins a handful of other progressive Democratic senators who are also considered possible 2020 presidential candidates in pledging not to take PAC money.

“Money has now really tipped the balance between an individual having equal power in an election to a corporation,” Harris said on a New York radio show.

She cited the impact of the Citizens United case, decided by the U.S. Supreme Court in 2010. It “basically means that big corporations can spend unlimited amounts of money influencing a campaign,” she said.

At a town hall in California this month, Harris was asked by an audience member if she would turn down donations offered by a corporation or corporate lobbyist.

“Well, it depends. It depends,” Harris said, prompting the audience member to respond: “Wrong answer.”

“Well, that’s not the answer you want to hear,” Harris said. “It doesn’t make it wrong.”

On the radio show Monday morning, Harris said she had come to her new view after reflecting on that exchange.

“I was asked that question, and I wasn’t expecting the question, and I thought about it afterwards,” Harris said.

Others in the Senate who have made similar pledges not to take corporate PAC money include Sens. Cory Booker, D-N.J., Elizabeth Warren, D-Mass., Kirsten Gillibrand, D-N.Y., and Bernie Sanders, I-Vt.